THE 3 PILLARS OF EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION

COMMUNICATION COMPETENCE:

Communication-based knowledge acquired either naturally (by observing and evaluating the others) or through instruction. Learning and appreciating the balance between listening and speaking.

Speak clearly.

Communicate ethically.

Know when it is appropriate to speak.

Understand the message of your interlocutor(s).

Choose the best way to communicate based on context.

Demonstrate credibility.

Identify and resolve misunderstandings.

Manage conflict.

Be open-minded about another’s point of view.

Listen attentively

COMMUNICATION SKILLS

Ability to produce appropriate communication behaviors physically. Expressing communication competence in real-life. Emphasizes practice.

Eye contact: not too strong, not too little (or absent)

Facial expression: Relaxed features, natural expressions (not sullen – not too smiley)

Hand gestures: no clenched hands, finger tapping, nail biting, fist making, etc… Some people speak with their hands, which is perfectly fine since it is natural, only it is best to avoid wide gestures and flailing hands as they tend to be distracting.

Touch: In general, it is Ok to touch someone on their shoulders or their arms. Touch is important in communication because it creates intimacy, but know when it is appropriate to do so (some people simply don’t like to be touched).

Head movement/posture: Avoid leaning your head over and supporting it with your hands (signals boredom) and thumb supporting the chin while index touches the temple or eye (signals negative evaluation). Mirror your interlocutor’s emotions with your head movement, for ex nod to positive emotions and shake to negative ones.

Posture: Relaxed and natural, not tense or stiff. Keep a straight posture, leaning slightly forward (shows you care). Shoulders relaxed, arms uncrossed, no rocking from head to toes, no swaying left and right.

Note: legs crossed or uncrossed: there is no agreement on that. Personally, I feel comfortable when I cross my legs, because it feels natural to me, so I would say do what makes you comfortable

MOTIVATION/POSITIVE AFFECT

Communication will not go well, if you are not into it. Being in a good mood helps and looking forward to it gives you motivation

Good rest

Good food

Boost your mood (see above)

Keep positive thoughts

Sources:

McCroskey, J. C. (1984). The communication apprehension perspective. In J. A. Daly, & J. C. McCroskey (Eds.), Avoiding communication: Shyness, reticence, and communication, (pp. 13-38). Beverly Hills, CA: SAGE Publications

https://open.lib.umn.edu/communication/chapter/4-3-nonverbal-communication-competence/
https://open.lib.umn.edu/communication/chapter/1-4-communication-competence/

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